The Brooklyn Rail

APRIL 2022

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APRIL 2022 Issue
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(°) – seed

you have the fragility of an ear of wheat,
the muscles of a mare, the heat
of beaten sand
in your spine
and a plowing furrow,
the loneliness of a holy beast in the far
right corner of your mouth, where a newborn
intelligence grazes you
almost without awakening you

put your finger in the furrow of your heart, point to me

you discover your crease where my blood
drops on the forest of symbols, and in sleep may some kind of love
spill over
onto the objects surrounding

                  (whatever exceeds
the limits of the body activates
between the electric ligaments of the world
like the burning
of everything neutral—the beginning
of anonymity—it leans all its weight
on the Foreign Land of your body—please
don’t say it—close your mouth)

because your right eye brushes the water
of a buried sea
bramble and crown,
seed of
an unknown
                   silent as bronze out in the open, walk
in the now
as in a temple, as in memory—
                                                        until from the depths,
from the theater of the sea
an adult creature rises,
unarmed, believing in your mercy



Maria Grazia Calandrone

Maria Grazia Calandrone is a poet, playwright, journalist, performer, teacher, and writer based in Rome. She presents cultural programs on RAI Radio 3 and contributes literary criticism to many newspapers like Poesia, il Manifesto, Corriere della Sera and 7. She also leads poetry workshops in schools, prisons, and mental health units. Her poetry di lei has been translated into over twenty languages. In 2021 she was selected for the Premio Strega 2021, the most important Italian literary prize.


The Brooklyn Rail

APRIL 2022

All Issues